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Elf Wars ~ Discworld v Arda

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alias author Jan Hawke

Joined: 27 Dec 2008
Location: Dunheved Kernow
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  Quote Jano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Elf Wars ~ Discworld v Arda
    Posted: 31 Mar 2010 at 12:58am
This started out as purely an RP idea in the first RPG to fly in the Dream Galaxies - The Morning After the Night Before at the Broken Drum, moved over to the Biers pub thread (in the adult forum) but the pubs weren't versatile enough. The thought of seeing how well a Tolkien Elf could do on Discworld Elf turf is rather intriguing and so I'm continuing this 'chase' story as fanfic as I want to know where this'll end up... Wink
 
The story so far (taken from the narrative and relevant RP exchanges in the BD and Biers threads)
 

Image credit: Paul Kidby

It was a long way from the Ramtop Mountains (not so far from the Hub) to Ankh-Morpork Esme Weatherwax reflected. Not to be undertaken lightly for normally she hated travelling, but this was kind of an academic excursion and the invitation from Ridcully Mustrum (an old flame of sorts and a Lancre lad to boot), Archancellor of Unseen University and the top wizard on the Disc, had come with a post-coach ticket which meant that Esme didn't need to ride her wretched broomstick at all, not even down to the plains.
She had been here a week now and today she'd decided to stroll around the docks a little and visit this rather scruffy hostelry, the Broken Drum, where, the Wizards said, you could get a pretty decent pint of stout if you didn't mind mingling with some 'disreputable' sorts. Ridcully had echoed her contemptuous snort at this unthinking remark. Esme was well able to deal with disreputable sorts and had done so frequently. Disreputable sorts could most definitely not say the same of their dealings with Granny Weatherwax however. So she had no qualms for her well-being aside from a little disdain for the greasy door handle as she made her way into the Drum's dim and dingy common room.
 
Her swift gaze swept around the bar once and then back to a far shadowy corner where a tall thin figure was slowly sipping at a grubby pewter mug, unobtrusive and practically invisible until eyes that could see glimpsed a red glint in the pale skull-like face. Granny walked calmly enough up to the bar, but a low hiss escaped her lips as the strange, emaciated looking female warrior's gaze tracked her across the room. What in the world was an Elf, her deadliest of enemies, doing here in this city - places they generally avoided like the plague...?
 
Photoshop manip
of random Google
This was a strange world Námo had sent her to, but she trusted the Vala and he would know if her daughter was here or not. She had only been in this chaotic city a few hours, and although it was like no other she had ever seen, she knew someone like Baugbereth would gravitate inevitably to the darker side of the community and so it had not taken her long to discover this filthy tavern near the docks in the worst of districts known as The Shades. As she took in her new surroundings, Aeglos become aware that she was being stared at - and not in a nice way either. She was used to strange looks even from her own kind, but some of the mortals had appeared too frightened even to talk to her and had instead run off looking terrified, despite her being as polite as she knew how. 
Surprisingly the people appeared to have no such problems with Trolls, who roamed the streets here quite freely, even in daylight some of them, wearing some kind of oily covering on their stoney hides. Well this was another world and maybe the Trolls here were different, and so evidently were Elves she thought, as yet another woman clutched her children to her and ran off in the opposite direction. The directions she had asked of one military-looking Troll, who seemed to be some kind of City Guard, had at least directed her to the Broken Drum, though his parting words had unsettled her... "Dat's no place fer a lady, but I daresay one of your sort wouldn't worry 'bout dat. Nice sword you have dere too - just don't let me see you lookin' to use it in the decent parts of Town Or There Will Be Trouble And No Mistake!" She had thanked him nonetheless as he had appeared to have an air of authority - the dwarves and other townsfolk looked on him with some respect as they hurried past, giving them both a wide berth...
 
The tavern was as expected - clearly frequented by the less honest citizens, if not downright bad through and through. Yes, this was the sort of place someone like Baugbereth would make a beeline for, but somehow she didn't like to ask about her daughter straight off, instead taking her mug of ale into one of the darker corners to take her time summing up the establishment and it's seedy customers. There were mostly men in here, but a few dwarves too and a couple of Trolls who were watching her closely. She ignored them after checking their weapons, knowing they had no chance of harming her or even getting close before she could disarm them.
 
Her scrutiny of the other 'customers' was cut short when another female walked in. An old mortal, the newcomer emanated confidence and power and as Aeglos watched her walk over the bar, she knew the this was a woman to be reckoned with, not least because she had looked her in the eye and kept looking, not frightened at all and addressed the barman peremptorily
"Blessings on this tavern - I'll have an apple brandy and I take it you're not expecting me to pay either..."
The elf smiled slightly to herself as the man reacted to this old skinny woman all dressed in black in much the same way as he had to her, though she had not refused to pay of course.
 
Again the woman looked her right in the eye and Aeglos came to a decision. She spoke quietly enough but her raspy voice seemed to surprise the old lady - or maybe it was her invitation?
"Would you care to join me, my Lady?"
 
It was not the first time Granny had met Elves, but this one was positively strange and not behaving too well neither. She didn't look too pretty for a start being pale in a waxy, corpse-like way, almost like a zombie - only not quite. The Witch's hard beady eyes narrowed suspiciously as the nasty creature spoke to her politely, but her voice sounded like she'd been smoking old rope non-stop for years. Was the dark enchantress sick, or just daft in the head? Not using her glamours to blur her true appearance and look wildly beautiful, with a voice like honey to match the evil charm that bent lesser people's mind into thinking they were looking at some impossibly rare and beautiful being - who had to be adored and obeyed without question whilst she played with them like a cat with a mouse...
"Happen I will then Elf-woman..." The Witch nodded curtly, still glaring magnificently at the Elf as she made her way over to the grimy table "... I'm up to your tricks though, so no funny business. I've whupped your Queen hollow enough times now, so don't think you'll fare any better!"

"I have no Queen, my lady..." Aeglos spoke impassively as always but was becoming a little irritated with people treating her as though she was about to hurt them in some way. "I mean no harm to anyone on this world, least of all to old women like yourself or any other mortal for that matter." She stopped then for the terrible old woman was actually trying to get into her mind. Laughing now, Aeglos let the ancient Witch through and let her look around a bit, noting that she began to look bewildered and then postively surprised.
"You're no Elf! Who are you and what do you want here?"
Again the glare was back in place, but this time the woman's tone was more conciliatory at least, though obviously used to having her questions answered and quickly at that. "I am not like any Elf you have known before , that is all." Aeglos' answered calmly, used to people not liking her much. "And on my own world most people would agree with you. But I am an Elf nonetheless. My name is Aeglos - that means Snowthorn. And whom do I have the pleasure of drinking with?" 
 
Not an Elf at all?! Well... not the sort Esme had ever met as she obviously realised. On her own world... that would explain why the wretched female wasn't even attempting to ensorcel anyone at all, like any other decent Elf on the Disc would've. No deception intended at all. She was a killer all right, but one that did so rationally and only where it was warranted. Honourably even. Granny hastily revised her opinions and looked at the not-an-Elf warrior with a kinder appraisal now she knew she wasn't of the same stock as the wickedly cruel Elves who constantly tried to dominate the true world on her part of the Disc, where the Old Ones were held back by stone and iron. This was a different kind of creature altogether and Granny was intrigued now.
"Mud in yer eye then, Aeglos!" she raised her glass and took a lady-like sip of the apple-brandy and surreptitiously altered the horrible musty taste into something that resembled  her own excellent home brew. "Name's Weatherwax. But you can call me Granny for now. And you din't answer my question. What's a stranger Elf like  you doing in a boozer like..."
 

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vampire bat and elf
The large vampire bat had been dozing the day away in a scrubby willow that somehow survived growing close to the sluggish muddy River Ankh a dozen or so yards from the Broken Drum. She had arrived in the city as dawn was breaking and, recognising the disreputable tavern as being popular with the Trolls who were just coming off shift she had glided into the tree and settled down, mostly hidden by the dusty whip-like fronds not paying attention to the comings and goings until about an hour before the sun was sinking.
The first thing to capture her attention had been the arrival of Aeglos. The bat had hissed at seeing her mother here so soon. She had known Mandos would send someone after her, but her mother! Baugbereth had hurriedly woven a shielding spell, thickening the shadows around her so she could hide from her bearer's sharp senses and the luck had been with her, for Aeglos was still a little befuddled at this strange city and had passed into the Broken Drum unaware of her daughter's sharp little eyes boring into her.
Her mother had been followed in quick succession by the witch whose aura of power had trailed behind her like a comet and again Baugbereth had shrunk back, quieting her mind for the old woman's awareness was hard as icy diamonds and far too alert. Then the strange boy who was raw with magic, but inexperienced and she watched him coolly wondering at so many strange people going into this place. Maybe she should look for another place... Baugbereth sent her mind soaring out over the grimly sleazy area where the proliferation of thieves and killers had called out to her in the early morning, searching for some other haven and found another place nearby. If the bat could have smiled she would have, but her mind sank back into the furry winged body in satisfaction. More odd 'people' were arriving now, a mortal noblewoman  and an even odder group of three females - a human, a tall bear-like being and another but tiny in comparison being barely knee-high to an elf.
Annoyed now, the bat that was Baugbereth unfolded her wings as the twilight grew darker and she glided down to the lower branches, then over the turgid grey-brown river briefly before she turned and languidly flapped her way off further into the Shades where she sensed others of her own kind, though in human form...

© 2007 Janowyn
The silent flight of the bat caught Glorfindel's calm slate-blue eyes, but he also was rather too full of new experiences as he made his way towards the Broken Drum and so he thought no more of it, for he was looking for a female elf. Well, two to be exact, but one was well-known to him. The city of wizards, humans, dwarves and trolls apparently all getting along reasonably peacefully was a little strange to him but it was the noises that assailed him most, as well as the stench of this dirty wide river. He knew Aeglos was here too for he had asked a few people if they had seen her and been directed to this grimy building. The very worst sort of tavern. He shook his head but walked coolly towards the Broken Drum, ducking his almost seven foot frame under the door lintel.
The elf's keen glance soon spied Aeglos, a friend of sorts from Mandos, though he had not known her well in his second life and strode through the tavern past a scruffy man-child, a bold looking red-haired woman with two rather strange, furry though obviously sentient creatures. He smiled briefly and kindly at a rather confused looking, but evidently gentlewoman and was about to ask her if aught was wrong, when he was taken unawares by a sharp touch of another mind on his and turned to look into the adamantine gaze of an old woman in black. 
The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one
will do ~ Thomas Jefferson
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alias author Jan Hawke

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  Quote Jano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 Apr 2010 at 3:44am

Another of these strange Elves... Granny's magnificent  glare was back in action as she regarded the tall male elf. This one was more noble-looking than Aeglos though and a belting great height to boot!

Aeglos' attention though was torn away as she saw a face from her recent past, Glorfindel of Imladris, her last battle commander in Middle Earth... Why would he be here as well? He had evidently spotted her too, but had paused a few tables away so Aeglos decided to approach her erstwhile lord, needing to know if he was here to aid her in her search for Baugbereth or to make sure she herself did not slip into her old killing ways as a merciless orc-bane...

"My Lord... I was not expecting another to be joining me in this hunt." Aeglos spoke in her usual soft rasp,  "But there are many strange people in this city, so I am glad to see you here. I have been talking with one who has much power in reaching out to other minds."

"Yes, so I perceive. She is most formidable, even though she is no Firstborn." He smiled at his fellow warrior with some affection for she was kin to him, despite her rough and corroded appearance. In this lifetime she seemed less reserved and her manner more approachable. A change he was very glad to see, for her wyrd in Endor  had been harsh indeed and she had lived so long in a self-inflicted penitent isolation. "As for my being here, yes, it is to assist you in your quest. Our quarry is well-versed in evil magics and this land will favour her talents - you will need my help in capturing her and taking her back to Arda. Let us go and talk to this wise old mortal - she might be able to help perhaps?"

 


© 2005 Christy "Goldenwolf" Grand Jean

The handsome dark brown-haired man on the far side of the bar who had been quietly minding his own business all afternoon, had been looking at the various commotions going on in the Drum as the sun sank outside. At first he took no notice of the exceptionally tall, thin female warrior who seemed to be quite aloof and not interested in starting anything off, but when the Witch of Lancre appeared he became a little concerned as the awful woman had obviously taken a dislike to the pale elf-like creature, but then seemed to have changed her mind

 

Well this night was looking to turn interesting pretty quickly Tarquinius decided, as he was again distracted by another new arrival and looked over at the very tall, very able looking warrior with long golden hair. Quin noted that the witch and the female warrior were doing the same. Yes, things were definitely getting interesting!

The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one
will do ~ Thomas Jefferson
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  Quote Jano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Apr 2010 at 12:15am
Granny frowned as Aeglos excused herself and went over to talk to the enormous golden-haired warrior not-an-Elf . At that moment Aeglos happened to look around and shrugged at her, then led the towering Elf back to their table.
 
Quin's dark predatory eyes glanced briefly Granny-wards. He had a good memory for faces and this old biddy's was one that his cousin Angua had shown to him on his first day with the Watch. A powerful Witch from Lancre. In fact probably the most powerful Witch on the Disc... And these too competent looking Elf warriors were now walking over to where this Hag was sitting glowering for all she was worth. Well that did it! Quin got up and stalked over to the other side of the tavern and right up to where this oddly assorted group were sitting.  
 
Aeglos' attention wavered as she again felt Granny staring at her, but Glorfindel drew her back in...
"... the Wise Ones have sent us here to hunt down a dangerous escaped criminal..." He looked at Aeglos and flashed her a sympathetic smile "... I know you were not expecting me or anyone else mellon nín, but Namó thought you ought to have someone watching your back on a strange world..."  
"My lord" Aeglos cut in, still speaking as gently as she was able, "maybe we should rejoin the acquaintance I was just talking to in a quieter part of this tavern?"
"By all means Aeglos. " Fin followed Aeglos' lean form towards a table tucked back in a quiet shadowy alcove near the bar that nevertheless commanded a good view of the entire tavern. He smiled to himself, thinking that the Lady of the Skulls had seemingly been making changes in her second life. He thought she was perhaps little less aloof than she had been when he 'knew' her previously. Not that anyone knew her that well - she had never been one for socialising, preferring her own company away from the battlefield, but then she had had good reason for that. The smile turned to a frown as he remembered that he as much as any other of the Eldar of Rivendell had all failed in their relieved 'respect' for Aeglos' privacy. She had had a most unhappy life, steeped in reparations for ancient crimes that she believed she had to be punished for and that had to be paid for in rivers of black Orc blood.  
Aeglos was not too happy that Glorfindel was here, but she knew Namó would have had a good reason for sending him here as well. As they took their seats back at the table, she was glad that she had asked Granny to join her for the Witch seemed to be taking their presence in her world in her stride. She arranged her features into a small smile and made the introductions in as relaxed a tone as she could manage. "Mistress Weatherwax, this is Lor..." He was shaking his head at her and she quickly changed tack "Glorfindel, who as you may guess is from my world, not yours."
Granny was an excellent 'coper', if grumpy with it, but she was beginning to feel a little put upon. She gave the male elf a business-like nod and gave him her best glare "Pleased to meet you I'm sure!"
 
Wolves have excellent hearing as well as good noses and when such superior sensory organs belong to an eager young werewolf copper there is no way such a passing remark would remain undetected. Quin had overheard two tall warrior Elves-who-did-not-smell-like-Elves hurried conversation before they went back to join the Witch. The female had one of the bloodiest auras he had ever encountered and, despite the male's evident sensitivity, he also reeked of power and light and that great b*stardsword he carried (a hand and a halfer) had definitely been used a lot!
The werewolf was fast coming to the conclusion that he should get out of here in short order and go get some re-inforcements from Pseudopolis Yard. It looked like things at the Drum could be going south even more spectacularly than usual, but he was almost at these three strange companion's table now and he decided that  he ought to at least make some contact,  since the Witch at least was known to be 'benign', though her current appearance belied that. The three figures however were now deep in conversation and Quin decided to simply listen for now, took up a place at the bar but still close to their table and ordered a beer, his sensitive ears straining to hear the hushed conversation.
The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one
will do ~ Thomas Jefferson
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alias author Jan Hawke

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  Quote Jano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Apr 2010 at 11:38pm
Now they were seated Fin began to relax a little as Aeglos introduced Mistress Weatherwax. Having stopped Aeglos saddling him with the honorific of 'Lord' - he did not want to occasion to much recognition in this world as he hoped they would not be here too long - he nodded acknowledgement to the spell-caster
There were newcomers arriving in this place all the time and Aeglos frowned at two warrior mortals at the bar. Fin caught Aeglos' fierce gaze and looked at the objects of her scrutiny
Frowning himself now he looked back at the pale huntress and again spoke as quietly as only an Elf can. "What is it? Do you think they may have something to do with your daughter?"
Aeglos winced visibly as Fin mentioned Baugbereth, but as this was what she had been thinking too she answered him readily enough, her usually rasping tones quietened as his had been. "I do not think so, but maybe we should find out?" Her eyes kept gliding back to the huge be-scarred male, narrowing in reluctant memory of other massive, tortured, bodies. Though this mortal was obviously no mutated thrall of Melkor or Sauron, her own mutilated instincts nevertheless sensed the power of and within this warrior.
Again Fin looked at his strange kinswoman, a look of sadness on his face for he could see that even shriven of her demons, she would never regain all her elven heritage. Gently he asked her another question, for in this she would always be his superior. "Did her trail lead you to this place Aeglos?"
"Not inside this tavern no, but she was outside earlier - near the river and then I lost her scent..."
"Not surprising - this whole city stinks to high heaven. I wonder how you can find a trail at all..." He stopped a moment as he took in her irritation and tried to pass it off lightly, "Forgive me, but I do not think even the foul forges of Angband could have competed with the stench of this river?!!"
" Speak not of that place to me Glorfindel..." Her ruined eyes flared bright as flaming rubies for a moment and then went to their usual colour of long-dried blood as she reined in her temper again. "I can follow her scent even unto the nethermost cesspits of hell and back again. She was outside for sure several hours past but then she was gone - disappeared. I think she may have abandoned her form... she could be anything now." The idea struck home and Her glance went back to the Agatean warrior woman with the strange glass eyes. "She has not touched any being in here - maybe we should move on? Look elsewhere?"
"What shape would she have shifted into do you think?"
"In Endor she generally went by the forms of Orcs or Elves, but she did sometimes take on the shape of wolves and of bats too. All those would draw attention in a city though - but... this is a strange place, so perhaps she could pass unnoticed...?"
Glorfindel stirred, remembering the erratic flight of the large night creature he had taken no heed of on his own arrival - and close by the river too. "Aeglos... I saw a huge bat fly off right outside of here as I arrived..."
 
The Elves voices had been too quiet even for his sharp ears, but as the warriors' conversation became more animated Quin received Glorfindel's last comment loud and clear though it was barely above a soft whisper. He almost dropped the tankard of beer he'd just picked up - he had also scented the flying rat vampire in the scrubby willow outside and thought no more of it at the time. Was this the dangerous criminal the tall Elf-man had talked of? 
No more delay, this was Watch business no doubt about it. He approached the corner table where these strangers had gathered. He nodded respectfully at Granny (who was known to Watch as a person to 'be aware of' after certain events in the Ankh-Morpork Opera House), and focussed on the Elves.
"My Lord and Lady -"  He was more than aware that rock-blue and dried blood gazes had pierced him to the soul even before he had opened his mouth and he wanted to howl at such scrutiny... "I - I am Lance-Constable Tarquinius of the City Watch and I must advise you that any visiting officers of the law are required to present themselves to Commander Vimes, or Captain Carrot, in Pseudopolis Yard before they carry on any legitimate pursuit of criminals, in any part of this City."
 
Quin caught a glimpse of murder in the strange female's eyes for a moment and wondered whether he was addressing a fellow enforcer or not. His stance shifted and his shoulders squared as he prepared to face attack, but  the he-elf placed a calming hand on her forearm and the evil ruby glint subsided as suddenly as it had appeared. The golden-haired one turned and smiled grimly at Quin.
"We will be happy to attend your senior officers Lance-Constable - however, we were hot on the trail of our quarry, but think we may have lost it outside this tavern. Perhaps... we need help, for we are strangers here. I am Fin and this is Aeglos - we should go to this Pseudopolis Yard? Immediately."
Quin recognised the tone of command in the elf and  unconsciously held himself to attention.
"I overheard your talk of a large bat... Fin. I too was aware of the animal in question earlier this evening but thought no more of it until you mentioned it to the La... Aeglos. Perhaps we should go outside and investigate that first - I could send word back to the Yard...  if I can pick up the scent?"  They both had risen and now Fin's slate-blue eyes were alight with urgency.
Granny eyed Quin with some wariness though he had caught her eye respectfully enough, but he was more interested in the not-Elves who seemed to have decided it was time for them to leave. Aeglos nodded at her as they followed Quin out and Glorfindel spoke quietly as he paused beside her.
"Farewell Mistress Weatherwax - the business we are on may cannot wait, but I feel our paths may yet cross again." He felt her mind skimming over his again and this time let her in to see what she sought. The creature that was Baugbereth.
Granny withdrew as lightly as she had entered, her face a mask as she looked at him with fresh respect."Humpff! Well Lorfindel I wish you well in yer business - if she is drawn to such power as you think, then I believe you are quite right. We will meet again I think and likely in my homelands where the might she seeks is guarded well. I will watch for her and help you and your hunter as I can."
"May the Light keep you safe Mistress Weatherwax." Fin bowed his head and swiftly turned to follow Quin and Aeglos out of the tavern.
 
"Aeglos has hunted this person before Quin."
*I'll just bet she has!* Quin thought to himself as he led the pair out of the Drum, feeling a little overwhelmed for both Elves were taller than he - Fin by almost a foot. It was Aeglos he was more wary of as he looked over his shoulder and took in the feral stalk and the barely suppressed bloodlust. *I hope the gargoyles are out moon-bathing by now, 'cos if this old girl picks up anything I won't be able to do a thing to stop her.*
 
Aeglos was trawling back and forth by the dirty river willow, cursing herself for not checking the area more carefully after losing the trail outside the Broken Drum, but the tavern had looked such a likely place that Baugbereth might seek to flex her will on some not so innocent denizen.  
"Well this is where the bat was earlier on - right up in the upper branches where it's nice and dark. They don't like the daylight do Vampires!" Quin pointed up at the filthy grey-leafed willow and then stirred uncomfortably as Aeglos jumped cat-like into the lower branches and swiftly climbed on muttering away gruffly to herself as she did so.
"She is not a Vampire - not all the time anyway!"
"Nor a bat, Lance-Constable Tarquinius."
Quin looked up at the tall, sleek muscled he-elf a little puzzled. "Just call me Quin. What is 'she' then?"
"Some of the time she's a little like Aeglos - she's her daughter. But she can take on other forms. That's why we have to find her as soon as we can - before she can do any great evil."
 
Quin nodded soberly, half listening to Aeglos who was coming back down the tree muttering curses in a language he could not understand. "Which way did you see the fugitive fly off to, Fin?"  A lean, sword-calloused hand pointed vaguely upriver in the direction of Palace and Quin's breath was drawn sharply inwards, but before he could say anything the she-Elf was back.
"It was her for sure, but I do not know if I can follow her trail in this form through the air."
"You may not have to... I think I know where she's gone." He was looking anxiously up at the rooftops now, hoping that Corporal Buggy Swires was on owl patrol - or failing that a gargoyle...
"I'll send word ahead - the place she's likely heading for is almost on our way to the Yard anyway and we may be able to meet reinforcements there..."
"Where do you think she's gone then? I was sure this place would have attracted her."
"She was going towards another tavern - for the undead." He did not like the look that passed between the two not-Elves and then more quizzically at him "Like Vampires...? Zombies?"
"She seeks her own kind then - we must hurry now Quin!"
The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one
will do ~ Thomas Jefferson
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  Quote Jano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Apr 2010 at 12:48am
The vampire bat circled the dark tavern a few times then glided onto the gutter and hung there for half a minute reading the notice outside... 
... be aware  that the management reserves the right to refuse service to werewolves and other kinds of form-changing entities in their animal aspects, unless these are capable of some kind of speech...
*Ah well...* The bat let go of the gutter and in the time it took to reach the ground metamorphosed into her true and original form, a tall, willowy Elf with silver-gilt hair and glittery charcoal grey eyes that were alight with anticipation as she landed, lithe as a cat and then carried on reading...
If you are here to cause trouble... may your god(s) have mercy on your soul - if you have one. Weapons are not permitted save those natural attributes The Darkness has endowed upon whatever creature choses to enter these dread portals.
 
The Elf's beautiful lips slowly curved into a cruel smile as she walked sinuously past the Zombie doorman "As you can see I carry no weapons save those I was born with, my good man." She had a voice like a cat purring through a mouthful of honey and the Zombie tipped his hat to her as she oozed past him, clad in heavy midnight blue velvet from her neck to her toes, but managing somehow to give the impression that the dress was the flimsiest diaphanous silk.
 
"Right y'are yer Ladyship - enjoy your evenin' "
"Oh yes - no doubt of that at all!" The voice of the p*ssycat that has cornered all the cream, as well as several rodents was making all six of the Zombie's toes curl and his dull eyes followed her wake into the mausoleum dark and quiet of the tavern. She had also lied of course. Quite a lot of her natural power had been augmented after she was born, bestowed upon her by the demi-god who stole her from a mother who had known she and her baby were in the deepest trouble and had murdered her newborn and killed herself immediately afterwards... For demi-gods who are also necromancers, death is merely an inconvenient hiccup in their day job and so both mother and daughter lived again, but apart. The demi-god had had other plans for the tiny naturally-conceived elfchild than the mere bloodstock duties that her bereft mother was condemned to for a hundred years or more. Baugbereth's destiny was as a brood queen and over the years her adoptive 'parent' showered power upon her, so she too was almost a demi-god. Long before he finally took her as his mate and she learned her final lessons in how to wield unholy power and truly attain the meaning of her self given name - 'Cruel Queen'.
 
***********
 
*Yes! This place will serve well to make a start. Very well indeed!* The charcoal eyes had turned to jet now as she took in her surroundings with relish, intently regarding the clientele in the flickering smoky torchlight. Fiery red glints began to glow deep in her eyes, such as might be taken as reflections from the flames, were in fact the only thing she had in this world that was held in common with her peers, the gods living on Cori Celesti. Though she was an absolute mistress of shape-shifting, she could not conceal the true nature of her eyes from those who had the strength to evade the glamour of her all but omnipotent will.
 
Elves can see very well in the dark and though, strictly speaking Baugbereth was no longer an Elf her most commonly adopted forms were largely nocturnal and the dim torchlight of Biers soothed her as she continued her observations of the other customers and the antics of the strange barman. The more she looked, the more comfortable she felt - these were her kind of people, though some seemed a little strange to her. Still. this was not her world, so perhaps she should study them a little more before she began to think of building a powerbase. She smiled as she thought of her old lover - he was always emphasising the need for meticulous planning and investigation and everything she knew and became was because of him. Pity really - he would most likely have enjoyed being on this little journey of discovery with her.
 
Time to get to know the denizens of this drinking den. She could be patient when needed and it looked fairly sleepy in here still.
"Some sweet cider if you please" Baugbereth smiled nastily at the Igor, having overheard the conversation he'd just had with the soldier, "and salmon with a side salad and salsa sauce"
 
"Coming right up. Would you like a half or a pint? Oh, by the way I believe the fith and the vegetable plate collection are off ." LOL
 
"Really? Just when I'm feeling sooo hungry..." Baugbereth's ravenous eyes glazed with indifference and settled back on the menu board, her voice thoughtful now "I have had nothing truly satisfying for so long... No steaks? How very annoying - do you do skewered meat at all? No? A platter of grilled meat then - forget the salad. Just a quarter minute each side over hot coals - enough to sear and heat the juices a little... almost as though the carcase was still alive." Her smile was back as she held the barman's eyes almost hypnotically like a snake does a small, furry rodents. "Pint. Of the cider - bring it to me with the platter and do not keep me waiting too long."
 
Quin skidded to a halt outside of Biers and smiled roguishly at the  Zombie doorman whom the two Elves were regarding with some curiosity, although Aeglos was looking as though violence was a strong possibility.
" 'Tis alright Bert - these two are with me..." Quin sauntered towards the doorway but stopped when Bert moved to block him, looking terrified but determined.
"S - sorry Mr Quin, but they can't come in with them gurt big blades... I'm sure they wouldn't use 'em, but - well you know how it is?"
Quin opened his mouth to start protesting but Fin spoke, his voice quiet and conciliatory.
"I have no wish to flout local custom, so of course I will leave my blade out here..."
"No, my Lord!" Aeglos' voice was fiercely hoarse with outrage and hunger. "We need our swords!"
His voice was still gentle, but adamant as he turned to face the warrior elleth. "No. I do not need my sword. We do need to guard this door however, in case she tries to run again Aeglos, so you must stay and hold my blade if you will. I can handle this with Quin's aid." The Elflord looked at Quin for confirmation as he took off his sword belt and handed it to the frowning Aeglos"Are there anymore exits to this place my friend?"
"A back door, but I can cover that inside... if there's likely to be a fight then I could summon more Watchmen - get a warrant even, so you both could go in." Quin's voice was talking low and urgent, but Fin was almost through the door as Bert made way, though still regarding the fuming Aeglos with great apprehension.
 
Quin smiled at the Zombie, this time in a more comradely way, then hastened after the tall Elf. "Fin? I thought you said Aeglos was your hunter?"
"That was for her benefit and safety. She is in fact the bait. Our quarry is strong and devious, but around Aeglos she will make mistakes, for she hates her with a passion that has no reason or restraint." He turned and looked closely at the werewolf, his grey-blue eyes stern and piercing. "I am the hunter here and only I have the power to stop to her. So maybe it is best to keep your friends away for now. I only want to make sure Baugbereth is here and what she is doing for now."
 
They were in the bar now and Quin took the lead, going up to the bar and ordering  coffee for them both from Igor.
"There you are Offither. Anything elthe?"
"No thanks. We're fine with these."
"Tho long as it thtays fine Offither. We've been quiet tho far thith evening."
Although Quin hadn't been in the city long Igor made it his business to know what his regulars 'trades' were and the werewolf was usually in with Sgt. Angua so it didn't take much guesswork. The lean, towering figure who made the Lance-Constable look almost puny was of more concern to the barman and was setting off alarm bells. Igor was already on pins with the other Elf who was blithely, tucking into her blue mixed grill with a relish more befitting a vampire. Igor decided it might be time to be 'busy out the back' for a little while...
 
"Is she here then?" Quin spoke casually, still facing the bar, only glancing at Fin for a moment.
"Yes - over by the stairs. She is looking at me already." Fin sipped at the coffee and smiled silkily in the female's direction. "She has silver-gilt hair and dark eyes. Where do those stairs go?"
"Just to the upper floor. I think there are storage rooms up there, maybe some guest rooms too." He paused and  turned slowly to look over at this dangerous escaped prisoner - who was quite possibly the most beautiful creature he had ever seen in his entire life... Quin swallowed his coffee hard and it's liquid fire almost went unnoticed as the sultry, fathomless dark gaze moved, or rather sashayed, from the Elf to himself.
 
"Lance-Constable Tarquinius! Look at me - now!" 

Fin's voice was not loud, but held such command that Quin could not disobey, though he felt like he was moving through treacle as he reluctantly turned back to his companion.

"Do not look at her again - she is not what she seems and her interest in you could be your death. Is that the back door over there?" Fin looked past Quin's shoulder. The copper nodded stiffly "The midden as well from the smell... Alright. We finish our coffee, then you go out that door and send word to your Captain Carrot or Commander Vimes to send as many men as they have to spare to cover both doors. Then go back to the front entrance. Do not let Aeglos come in here or show her face until I call for her - she will not like that, so tell her that is my command. She will obey then.”


As Quin tried to concentrate on slurping down the rest of his coffee he could still feel the beautiful female’s eyes boring into the back of his skull and it took every shred of willpower not to turn round. Fin put a powerfully-muscled swordman’s grip on Quin’s wrist as he put his empty mug down on the counter and spoke low and urgent.

“She is a vampire, but not as you know them here. She can take any form she chooses from your mind to manipulate you and will kill you on a whim. Go straight out and do not look back Quin – I will take her attention from you, but go swiftly!”

Quin needed no urging, nodded curtly and wasted no time or effort in making for the other doorway at the end of the bar. As he left Fin was finishing the dregs of his own coffee and this time smiled more fully, but with precious little warmth as he strode towards his quarry, knowing she might flee or fight at any time. He had not been untruthful in saying he needed no weapon, but right at this moment he wished he had his sword if only for comfort. She was smiling like a jungle cat at him and his anxiety surged as he reached her table, but he had faced worse than her and survived so his own frosty smile did not falter and his bow was relaxed and fluid as she put down her cutlery and dabbed her luscious curving lips with a napkin.

 

“What a pity you friend could not stay, Calaquendi.” Baugbereth nodded graciously at the stool beside her and was pleased when the Elf sat down, looking perfectly at ease. She laughed softly and looked at him with every apparent pleasure in much the same way as a wolf would look at a large and juicy haunch of antelope. “I am most flattered that The Shining Ones sent you in pursuit, for a moment I thought all I had to deal with was my dearest mama… this will be most amusing now I’ll warrant? May I know your name, as I am sure you know mine already?”

“If it pleases you, my Foewoman.” He would be damned if he gave her the satisfaction of making pleasantries so easily “I am Glorfindel of Gondolin and of Imladris.”

“My! I am genuinely honoured in that case. And of course you are also Glorfindel of Valmar, else you would not have been sent naturally?”

“Of course. This meeting is simply a courtesy call, but you would save us both a lot of trouble if you were to walk out of here with me now and let me take you back to Eä.”

“Ah, but where is the fun in that, Milord Glorfindel?”

“No fun there at all, madam. Only wisdom.”

 

He was watching her closely, pondering on the irony of the beguiling beauty of this hopelessly tarnished creature that had been Aeglos’ much-wanted first child, but had been lost at birth, changed into this lovely travesty with a heart of pure evil. Aeglos had tried to save them both the only way she knew, yet she was the one who had been mutilated in every way and brought to ruin, whilst her child had been filled to overflowing with power and indulged in every desire, however sick and depraved. In some respects Baugbereth was an ultimate work of art. Arts that were surely the blackest and most heinous in all of creation. And now she was here in this world, rich in raw magic and already revelling in the possibilities of conquest and corruption. He should have listened to Quin and waited for the other guards, but it was too late now.

The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one
will do ~ Thomas Jefferson
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alias author Jan Hawke

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  Quote Jano Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Apr 2010 at 1:02am
"I am not waiting here any longer!" Aeglos was almost crying in frustration at Quin's message from her Lord. She had to be there. Had to help him. He did not know what Baugbereth was capable of. She must had said that last bit aloud for the policeman sighed and moved again to stop her trying to push past the doorman.
"I'm sorry, but he said you had to obey his command... I think he does know what he's doing - he stopped her from trying to draw me over to her," Quin was trying hard not to pant, but the Elf warrior looked to be almost in pain at not being able to join Fin inside Biers. "besides - it won't take Constable Downspout long to get the message to the Yard and they can be here in a few minutes." She was thinking it over at least and he flashed a grin at her which was more flambuoyant than sincerely felt. "He said you should wait out here until he called for you. Please wait Aeglos, the other guards will be here soon."
 
She was furious, but she had to follow Fin's order for he stood high in the favour of Mandos and she still had much to do to prove herself worthy once more. So she relaxed, though the seconds seemed like hours until she and Quin both heard the percussion of many feet on the cobbles just around the corner before a motley but very dangerous looking crew appeared. However, before Quin could call out to the relief headed up by a very tall and brawny man and a female whose loping run was highly similar to Quin's own bedlam suddenly broke out inside Biers as a searing flash of lightning-blue light from inside turned night into day and then...
 
Quin's reaction was just fast enough to grab Aeglos and spin her around and back into the street again as a great muffled roar of anger came from Fin inside...
"Aeglos!! To the roof NOW!"
Quin could hear the sounds of the various creatures of the night inside in various stages of protest, anger and pain and paused for a split second not knowing which way to go, as Aeglos almost ran up the wall of the building towards the slates; but then Angua was beside him and bundling him back into the bar as Carrot, Detritus, Dorfl and Cheery arrived, all looking up into the smoky night sky.
"It's you and me kid - they can't go in, remember?" Angua growled at him as poor Bert the Zombie, who was still trying to get his dead eyes to work again, recoiled in their wake...
 
“Oh Thergeant Angua! Thank goodneth! Did you thee what happened? I think we’ll have to ban elveth now – I don’t want my clientele upthetting like that! It wath outrageouth! All that nathty bright light, thcaring the bogeymen and making poor Mr Icktholite the Banthee drop hith martini rotho all over that nith lady Thombie! And ath for that horrible woman, or vampire, or whatever thee wath! Turning into a bat in here – the theer nerve of it! I won’t thtand for thith type of behaviour in here, I won’t, Thergeant!”

“Slow down please Mr Igor…”

 

Sgt. Angua licked her pencil and began writing in her notepad when yet more news from outside was impending in the rather shaken form of Bert the Zombie doorman, who was fiddling with one of his thumbs that had fallen off after Fin had apparently snatched his longsword back from his safe custody.

“Oh Mr. Quin. Miss Angua. Mr. Carrot tole me to say that the lady elf with those horrible fiery eyes is chasing a bat up on the roofs… an’… an’ they is ‘In Pursuit Under Advisement With The Gentleman Elf.’ He says you both should stay and take statements on What Went Down In Here? They’s… they’re a-headin’ for the Brass Bridge I thinks.”

 

“Marvellous! And we’re lumbered with this lot!” muttered Angua and looked at Quin balefully, then sighed in resignation and looked around the bar for the most bolshie-looking patron. Her gaze settled on a rather strange vampire she knew slightly and then turned and smiled nastily at her cousin “As you were instrumental in starting this affray Lance-Constable you can start your statementing with that lady in the tomato pink blouse…”

 

“Erm…” Quin was about to try arguing but wisely desisted, recognising all the signs of an imminently bad fur day, which in b*tches like Angua were not to be trifled with… “yes, Sarge! Right away Sarge!” He looked at the vampire rather apprehensively, but then had a rather ‘twitchy’ feeling in his coccyx, which, had he been in his other form, would have had his tail wagging. As it was he remembered himself enough not to pant, nor let his tongue loll out of his mouth and trying not to show too much canine, as this wasn’t too polite in any species on a first meeting anyway, went up to the rather stunning-looking vampire with a smile that may not have quite spread from ear to ear but did reach his dark, flashing eyes .

“Evening Miss… did you see anything of this altercation?”

The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one
will do ~ Thomas Jefferson
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